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to use the skyflyer solo service for my kids?

(58 Posts)
MajorieDawes Sun 13-Oct-13 22:31:22

Not really AIBU but really need honest opinions ASAP.

We live in NYC. My mum lives in London and has stage 4 breast cancer. Originally we were told she has 18-24 months. I came for a few days, planning to come back with kids in Christmas.

Just before I came a few days ago my Mum has suddenly started gone downhill so fast, it's scary. We don't think she's going to last more than a couple of weeks if that. She really wants to see the grandchildren (aged nearly 10 and nearly 7). They're in NYC right now. I was going to fly back and get them but my Mum has now said she would rather I didn't go as she wants me to stay. My husband can't bring them as his work is inflexible.

We were thinking of having them fly on a day flight with the BA skyflyer solo service. Flight is about 6.5 hours. DH will wait at airport in case of delays (it's the rule anyway). I will pick them up.

What do you think?

CocacolaMum Sun 13-Oct-13 22:35:32

I am really sorry for your situation. Its impossible.

Only you know your kids, for me it would just be too huge a risk to let them fly alone but mine aren't yours. could anybody else bring them?

twofalls Sun 13-Oct-13 22:35:56

I have no experience of it but I would say that I would probably do it. Are your chikdren anxious flyers? Do they get on well? If the answer is no and yes then even better.

So sorry about your mum

Bluebell99 Sun 13-Oct-13 22:35:59

Yes, I think I would if your husband really can't bring them himself. My dd's best friend who had just turned 11, flew to south Africa and back this summer. The only thing is, you will really want to be with your mother, and maybe concentrate on her, rather than having the responsibility of your children too. So sorry to hear about your mum tho.

I think it'd be fine and they'll have a great time. Dh used to have to fly solo to and from U.K. for school and loved it.

So sorry about your mum.

no problem whatsoever. They are extremely well looked after and its a straight flight.

I put ds on a flight to Canada aged 5. Lots of kids do it all the time. hence having the service.

Pigsmummy Sun 13-Oct-13 22:38:20

I booked this service for people (ex pats flying their children)
and never had an issue. Do it.

meddie Sun 13-Oct-13 22:38:56

Mine flew to texas aged 7 and 8. They loved it. They got spoiled rotten by the flight attendants.

ThePearShapedToad Sun 13-Oct-13 22:39:21

I'm sorry to hear the reasons behind your dilemma, sending thanks

I used to work for sky flier; I have nothing but admiration for the (usually ladies) who work there

The rules and regulations put in place to ensure your child is monitored every single step of the way are incredible, not to mention the kindness and have fun attitude of most of the staff when the children are on a layover between flights

If you decide to use them, it's a brilliant service

kiriwawa Sun 13-Oct-13 22:39:23

Of course it will be fine. I did it at that age and they'll be together anyway.

I'm so sorry your mum's prognosis is so bad

CallMeNancy Sun 13-Oct-13 22:39:24

Sorry about your mum.

BA will look after them very well, & they will be together.

MajorieDawes Sun 13-Oct-13 22:39:41

Thanks. It is a difficult situation. DH could bring them at the weekend. That might be too late. Perhaps we have to just take that risk.

On the other hand, they fly long haul twice a year (with me or dh obviously) - often even further than UK to dh's family. So they're used to flying and they're not anxious flyers at all (they love it)

CocacolaMum Sun 13-Oct-13 22:41:00

Then do it. If they are used to flying I cannot see it being a problem.

CallMeNancy Sun 13-Oct-13 22:42:14

Don't worry about the BA part. They look after solo children all the time, and are very good at it.

The only issue for me would be how upset the children are knowing why they are going alone.

Andro Sun 13-Oct-13 22:42:29

At 10, as long as your dc have flown before and are not scared of flying, I wouldn't hesitate as long as the child was in agreement at 6 (nearly 7) I wouldn't be happy with them being on a longish flight without me/dh/a specific adult I had agreed to accompanying them.

MajorieDawes Sun 13-Oct-13 22:43:33

Agree Andro. Not worried about older one, it's the little one who is my main concern.

Wibblypiglikesbananas Sun 13-Oct-13 22:43:43

I used to work for BA. They will be absolutely fine. This is one of the most common routes for this service. They'll be assigned an 'auntie' or 'uncle' to look after them on the ground and have a dedicated member of staff on board to look after them too. They'll probably have a great time (despite the very sad reason for needing to travel).

I am so sorry to hear about your mum. I wouldn't hesitate to book them onto the next available flight in your position. Feel free to PM me if you want any more reassurance.

IwishIwasmoreorganised Sun 13-Oct-13 22:44:14

Do you have other relatives at this end to help out with your dc once they arrive? They're likely to be jet lagged and not able to fit in with regular mealtimes etc initially.

In your difficult situation I think I'd use sky flyer.

Xxx

Lilacroses Sun 13-Oct-13 22:46:01

So sorry to hear about your mum. I've never done this but know people who have and their children have had the most wonderful time on the flight. My DP used to fly solo back and forth to Lagos when she was at boarding school and enjoyed it.

theolddragon01876 Sun 13-Oct-13 22:46:10

The BA solo thing for kids is GREAT.

My Dd went from Boston to Edinburgh via heathrow 3 times using that service. I cant say enough good things about it. They get through security very quickly,just walked to the front with their "person" who hands them off to a flight attendant who keeps an eye on them throughout the flight. They are handed off to another "person" at the other end who takes them through customs immigration and baggage claim then walks them out to who ever is waiting for them. They have to show ID ( and they have to be the person you said would be picking them up) and sign for them.

I was stressed the first time I sent her off alone as I didnt know what to expect etc. It was fine,honestly. Dd was 13 when she first used it but they keep all the unaccompanied minors together and first time she flew there was a 7 year old, a 10 year old, Dd and another 13 year old.She actually had fun

Use it without fear,you have enough stress at the moment. Good luck XX

curlew Sun 13-Oct-13 22:46:29

I'm sorry it's such a sad reason- but it will be absolutely fine. Whoever said about it being a "huge risk" is talking absolute rubbish. They will be fine.

meditrina Sun 13-Oct-13 22:47:39

Yes, use it and don't give it another thought.

BA look after hundreds of unaccompanied children every year and provide a very good service.

What family/friends do you have on hand to help look after them whilst over here? For they may not want to spend as long at your DM's bedside as you do, so having someone you trust able to take them for part of each day could be important.

MajorieDawes Sun 13-Oct-13 22:48:04

Thank you all for your reassuring words, it's making feel less stressed about it all. I really appreciate it.

MajorieDawes Sun 13-Oct-13 22:49:06

Yes, we have family here and children have their old school friends who have offered playdates, sleepovers etc.

Andro Sun 13-Oct-13 22:49:11

Personally, I would use the service for the older one (assuming the 10yo agrees) and have your dh bring the younger one at the w/e - not least because with a desperately ill mum you would likely be stretched very think if the younger child was scared/upset/unable to cope with seeing your mum so ill (I think with 2 dc there you'd be thankful of your dh's presence and emotional support).

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